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Kees 48" Commercial Mower Deck Repair.

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  • Kees 48" Commercial Mower Deck Repair.

    My friend Rich from work has owned a Kees commercial mower to mow his one acre lot for the past 15 years. He got the mower from the previous owner, who owned it for 10 years. The front wheels are supported by wheel weldments that attach to the mower deck. Over the years the mower deck has thinned out due to rust and the deck cracked where the wheel weldments attach to it. Below is a picture of a Kees commercial mower.

    1. Kees Commercial Mower
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    Below is a picture of the cracked right side of the mower deck. If you look carefully on the right side you can see the three slotted holes, where the wheel weldments attach.

    2. Cracked deck on right side
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    To beef up this weak section I bent up some metal to weld to the inside of the deck
    I decided to leave the old sheet metal in place to give me the location for the wheel weldment mounting holes. The first step was to move the front face of the deck back into position and close up the crack. I used the bar clamp arrangement shown below.

    3. Using a bar clamp to close the crack
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    Once crack was closed and the deck was back in position I welded up the corner of the chute to hold the deck in place.

    4. Welding up corner of chute
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    5. Close up of chute weld
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    sigpic
    Miller Thunderbolt
    Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
    Miller Dynasty 200DX
    Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
    Lincoln LE 31 MP
    Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
    16" DuAll Saw
    15" Drill Press
    7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
    20 Ton Arbor Press
    Bridgeport

  • #2
    Next I welded up the back side of the corner of the chute support.

    6. Open crack on back corner of chute
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    7. Crack MIG welded
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    The MIG weld followed the crack as it should, but it left a space between the weld and the previous fillet weld, which looked like I miss located the weld, so I went over it with a TIG weld to straighten out the fillet weld.

    8. Crack TIG Welded
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    The next step is to weld the previously bent up piece to the inside of the right corner of the mower deck. I have found it helpful to use a lot of clamps to pull the old metal against the new metal so there is no crack to fill with the weld.

    9. First piece clamped and welded
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    10. Second piece Welded
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    sigpic
    Miller Thunderbolt
    Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
    Miller Dynasty 200DX
    Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
    Lincoln LE 31 MP
    Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
    16" DuAll Saw
    15" Drill Press
    7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
    20 Ton Arbor Press
    Bridgeport

    Comment


    • #3
      I noticed that the two surfaces that support the right wheel weldment were at an acute angle, so that the weldment bracket didn't sit flat. To solve the problem I cut off the thin old metal from the area that supports the right wheel weldment and welded in a 2nd piece of metal on the outside that was bent to exactly 90°.
      To bend the 2nd piece, I used my 20 ton HF arbor press with the Swag finger brake kit and the Swag Flat top adjustable bottom V die. The adjustable bottom die allows you to control the radius when you air bend sheet metal with a sharp punch. The narrower the opening the tighter the radius.

      11. Bending sheet metal
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      12. Swag Finger Brake
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      13. Swag Flat Top
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      I clamped the wheel weldment to the 2nd piece of sheet metal and then transfer punched the hole location. Then I predrilled the holes on my milling machine. I used a shaper gage to keep the 2nd piece from bending due to the drilling pressure.

      14. Drilling 2nd piece
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      Next I clamped the 2nd piece to the mower deck using screws through the previously drilled holes. The holes in the mower deck were slotted so I had no trouble with alignment.

      15. 2nd Piece clamped with screws
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      sigpic
      Miller Thunderbolt
      Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
      Miller Dynasty 200DX
      Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
      Lincoln LE 31 MP
      Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
      16" DuAll Saw
      15" Drill Press
      7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
      20 Ton Arbor Press
      Bridgeport

      Comment


      • #4
        16. Close up of 2nd piece clamped to deck
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        With the wheel weldment still in place I welded the 2nd piece to the inner new sheet metal and the thin old outer skin. In essence I used weld to fill the gap between the 2nd piece and the inner piece so that the wheel weldment would sit flat on the surface.

        17 Welding of 2nd Piece from top
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        18 Welding of 2nd Piece from front
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        Next I welded a piece to the left side of the mower deck. In this case the slotted holes were in thicker metal so I cut out the very rusted piece on the outside of the front of the deck.

        19. Piece welded to inside of the left side
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        20. Cut out piece on the left side
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        sigpic
        Miller Thunderbolt
        Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
        Miller Dynasty 200DX
        Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
        Lincoln LE 31 MP
        Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
        16" DuAll Saw
        15" Drill Press
        7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
        20 Ton Arbor Press
        Bridgeport

        Comment


        • #5
          21. Close up of weld on cutout
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          22. The piece that I cut out
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          I noticed that the metal just above the left wheel weldment was cracked so I ground it out and welded it up. Most likely it got cracked due to additional stress because the right side wasn't supporting its load.

          23. Cracks above left wheel weldment support ground out
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          24. Cracks above left wheel weldment support welded up
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          The center section between the pieces that I welded on the left and right was also thin so I welded pieces to the inside. The rust was thick and in a continuous layer, but it had to be removed to weld to the outer skin. After trying a variety of different methods I found that the needle scaler worked best. I would have preferred to remove the thinner metal in the center section, but I didn't want to add more hours to the job.

          25. Needle scaler good for removing heavy rust
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          Attached Files
          Last edited by Don52; 04-28-2019, 07:48 AM.
          sigpic
          Miller Thunderbolt
          Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
          Miller Dynasty 200DX
          Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
          Lincoln LE 31 MP
          Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
          16" DuAll Saw
          15" Drill Press
          7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
          20 Ton Arbor Press
          Bridgeport

          Comment


          • #6
            26. Two pieces added to center
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            27. Close up of center welds
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            Next I cut off and replaced the chute guide.

            28. Old chute guide
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            29. Welds on inside of chute guide
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            30. Welds on outside of chute guide
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            Attached Files
            sigpic
            Miller Thunderbolt
            Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
            Miller Dynasty 200DX
            Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
            Lincoln LE 31 MP
            Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
            16" DuAll Saw
            15" Drill Press
            7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
            20 Ton Arbor Press
            Bridgeport

            Comment


            • #7
              The last step was painting it.
              31. Painting deck
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              32. All painted.
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              My friend Rich sharpened and balanced the blades and put it back together again. I wondered about the name "Kutter" on top of the pulley cover it must be the model of the mower. I painted over the "Kees" decal on the mower deck after I repaired it, so I know that it is a Kees commercial mower. Below is the 48" Kees commercial mower back together. The grass cutting height is back up to where it originally was because the deck no longer sags.

              33. Back together again
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              Attached Files
              sigpic
              Miller Thunderbolt
              Smith Oxyacetylene Torch
              Miller Dynasty 200DX
              Lincoln SP-250 MIG Welder
              Lincoln LE 31 MP
              Clausing/Coldchester 15" Lathe
              16" DuAll Saw
              15" Drill Press
              7" x 9" Swivel Head Horizontal Band Saw
              20 Ton Arbor Press
              Bridgeport

              Comment


              • #8
                Well done on the repair and really well done presenting it. I enjoyed the posting. Thanks.

                Comment

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